Law Society red-faced over roll gaff

A DOZEN lawyers who were wrongly included in a list of non-practising solicitors about to be taken off the roll have received a full apology from the Law Society.

In a series of apologies printed in the Law Society Gazette which run for more than half a page, the society expresses its regret for any “distress and embarrassment” caused by the mistakes, which it has blamed on computer error.

It goes on to apologise to the family of one solicitor included on the list who had actually died 20 years ago.

The blunder dates back to June when the society published a long list of names of solicitors it claimed did not have a practising certificate and had failed to reply to a form asking whether they wanted to remain on the roll.

“Notice is hereby given that it is proposed, after 21 days from the date of this notice, the following solicitors be removed from the Roll of Solicitors,” the society said.

One practising lawyer, who was included on the list, said she feared the error may have led people to wrongly believe she had retired.

Ten years ago she discovered her name was on the list of non-practising solicitors and asked the society to remove it.

“The fact that they can't even get their computer records right epitomises the inefficient way the Law Society is being run,” said the solicitor, who asked not to be named.

A society spokesman said records were being sorted before transfer to a new system.